china edition


Fujian Mazu Festival

Date: April 25, October 4
Venue: Meizhou Island, Putian (Fujian)

Mazu is the name of a legendary sea goddess, born Lin Muniang in 960 AD, or, to be exact, the 23rd of the 3rd lunar month of the first year of the Jianlong reign of the Song dynasty, and died on the 9th day of the 9th lunar month at the age of 28. As a philanthropist she offered medical service for fellow islanders, and with her weather forecasting ability she saved many fishermen from the menace of typhoons.

Fujian Mazu FestivalTouched by her good and moral deeds, the local people deified her as Angel of the Sea and Holy Mother who could bring blessings to them. A temple was built and dedicated to her memory on the Meizhou Island, so that islanders could offer sacrifices to her.

The 23rd day of the 3rd lunar month is the birthday of Goddess Mazu, and the 9th day of the 9th lunar month her death anniversary. On both dates the Temple of Mazu is thronged with thousands of pilgrims, many of them from Taiwan, who come to pay homage to the goddess, take part in the study of Mazu culture, go shopping at the arts and crafts exhibitions, and enjoy folk songs and dances and taste Fujian cuisine.